November 27th, 2020
Contact: Nikole Cababa, Secretary General, BAYAN USA
BAYAN USA slams incoming arms from the US:
Focus on economic and social relief, not more militarization!
BAYAN USA condemns the arms transfer between the US and the Duterte regime, as 18 million US dollars worth of military equipment from the US arrived in the Philippines this November 23. Some of the equipment include precision-guided munitions, similar to what was used to level the city of Marawi, in which 3 years later over 120,000 people remain displaced.
The incoming equipment is just a fraction of the several arms deals between the US and Philippines this year, which cost the Philippine government billions of pesos coming out of the pockets of the toiling masses, who are already facing a worsening economic recession and global health pandemic that has cost countless lives. Right now, the Philippines is being ravaged by damaging floods in the aftermath of Typhoons Quinta, Rolly, and Ulysses. According to the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, more than 3.6 million people have been affected by the floods, with nearly 280,000 displaced and at least 73 deaths. More than 67,000 homes have been damaged or destroyed leaving thousands of Filipinos without power or the ability to reach their loved ones. The Duterte regime is far more concerned around militarizing its police and army and ramping up its repressive counter insurgency programs than providing the much needed relief and support to its people.
Despite the numerous human rights violations and extrajudicial killings on Duterte’s track record, US imperialism will not skip a beat in profiting off of the Filipino people’s suffering, even under the newly elected US President Joe Biden. Defense Secretary Loreanzana has stated that even if the president changes, US foreign policy will be the same. We cannot rely on regime changes to resolve the economic and health issues in the Philippines, but we must organize towards a truly democratic alternative system that prioritizes the needs of its people over foreign imperialist powers.
BAYAN USA calls on the masses to demand a stop to the weaponizing and profiteering of the Philippines. Instead, the government should provide free health care and economic aid during the COVID-19 health crisis, and ensure communities recover from the recent typhoon devastation. Join us in exposing the US-Duterte regime’s fascism, helping pass the Philippine Human Rights Act (PHRA) to cut military aid to the Philippines, and supporting relief efforts by the National Alliance for Filipino Concerns.
Stop the Arms Deal!
Healthcare not Warfare!
US out of the Philippines!
November 27th, 2020